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Jennifer Hudson
“Spotlight”
(Arista/RMG)

It’s been awhile but some things are worth the wait! That best describes Jennifer Hudson’s much anticipated debut album. We knew this Dream Girl could sing, but sometimes even an Academy Award-winning performance doesn’t translate to the R&B or Pop world. But one may also remember we saw glimpses on the third season of American Idol where Hudson made the Top 10 before giving way to Idol winner Fantasia Barrino. But make no mistake, Hudson has delivered the goods with an outstanding collection of songs that features something for everyone. She earned her Diva stripes during Dream Girls, and for good reason, this girl has an amazing voice. But on this project [Executive Producer] Clive Davis found the right songs for Jennifer Hudson, the artist. Album highlights include Hudson's debut single, “Spotlight,” “If This Isn’t Love,” “Pocketbook” featuring Ludacris, “What’s Wrong (Go Away)” featuring T-Pain and " We Gon’ Fight." There’s even a duet with Fantasia, "I’m His Only Woman," and the song that most likely ensured her the Oscar, “And I’m Telling You I'm Not Going.” A debut album this strong makes Jennifer Hudson a no-brainer as an “Artist To Watch” for many years to come.


PLEASURE P
“Did You Wrong”
(Blue Star/Asylum)

 

Upon hearing Pleasure P’s debut single for the first time it reminded me of another record from back in the day that went on to become a pretty big hit, K-Ci & JoJo “All My Life.” Speaking of pretty, the one time member of Pretty Ricky has recently embarked on a solo career and he couldn’t have picked a better record to introduce himself. “Did You Wrong” evokes emotion and passion. It’s performed with a conviction that’s sure to touch women of all ages. Make no mistake, Pleasure P has star potential that makes him an FMQB "Artist To Watch!”

 

Akon
"I'm So Paid" (Featuring Lil' Wayne) 
(SRC/Universal/Motown)

Akon is back! The man is a hit machine as he  picks up where he left off on his multi-platinum Konvicted. "Right Now (Na Na Na)" is just a taste of his forthcoming album, Freedom. But it's another single, "I'm So Paid," that could be even bigger!  Akon’s signature sound is custom made for multi-format success and he’s more than ready to reclaim his spot on top of the chats. BET ON IT!

T.I.
“Whatever You Like”
(Grand Hustle/Atlantic)
 

While many agree Lil’ Wayne did a lot to help Hip-Hop regain its momentum, it’s T.I. who has exploded back on the scene with his latest album, Paper Trail, and it’s full of hits. “Whatever You Like” is a multi-format monster as is "Live Your Life," which got a shot in the arm following a red-hot MTV VMA performance with Rihanna. The street Hustla is about to end 2008 on top of the charts!


FMQB NOW

Sean Demery, PD
WYMS/Milwaukee

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